Has Chabvonga gone political?

HARARE - Chimurenga musician Jairos Chabvonga has over the years tried to concentrate on non-political lyrics. But he has of late gone political if his latest album Nhano (Step) is anything to go by.

Chabvonga’s fourth album released last month is made up of eight tracks including Makorokoto, Mahumbwe, Muti Mukuru and Munhu Hunhu among others.

Jairos Chabvonga

Jairos Chabvonga

The album was released just before former president Robert Mugabe resigned after serving the country for 37 years.

In the song Mahumbwe, the artiste used riddles to put his political message across.

In the song Chabvonga urged leaders to concentrate on serious business (kubika doro remukwerera) while leaving the children doing their little stuff (mahumbwe).

Chabvonga highlighted that elders were not supposed to sit on the gathering of children, a development which was common in Zimbabwe then when the then president Mugabe was a common feature at youth rallies.

“I was not targeting individuals but the society at large. For a healthy society to be attained, we expect elders to sit among themselves to discuss real issues affecting the society not to be seen always rubbing shoulders with children.

“In fact children are the ones expected to follow elders to their councils not vice-versa,” he said.

Apart from the controversial song, the album is made up of songs that carry Zimbabwe’s identity of mbira beat fused with electrical guitars to give a unique traditional beat.

The album was recorded using different studios for better production.

“I still believe that one day the chimurenga genre will rise to reclaim its lost glory and this is why I am releasing new albums on yearly basis.

“It pains me to see the genre being led to grave yards at the expense of bubble gum music,” Chabvonga said.

Growing up in Chitungwiza, Chabvonga fell in love with the chimurenga music from a tender age.

“Chimurenga music took a back seat when Mapfumo relocated to the United States of America and there is a lot to be done to revive it but I am encouraged by the positive response I am getting from my fans.”

Chabvonga said chimurenga genre is the backbone of Zimbabwean culture hence it should not be neglected at all.

“I believe the genre defines us as Zimbabweans. It started here hence Zimbabweans should be proud of it, they should not leave it dying,” Chabvonga said.